+ Some of the best Visuals on the Genesis
+ Great platforming
+ Finding all the secrets hidden within levels
- Can be beaten pretty quickly
What’s the story:At the time of its’ release, Castle of Illusion for the Sega Genesis was only the second “Mickey Mouse” game to grace home consoles. The first was Mickey Mousecapade on the Nintendo Entertainment System and that game wasn’t very good. If you were a fan of Disney games, and only owned an NES, after seeing Castle of Illusion you needed to own a Genesis. The game was developed by Sega of Japan and was part of the second wave of games released for the Genesis, not to mention one of the best looking home console games at the time.
The main story is very basic but has a cool little twist. Minnie has been kidnapped by Witch Mizrable and taken to her Castle. It’s there that the old witch will attempt to steal Minnie’s youth…unless you get to her in time. It is up to you to find seven gems which will form a rainbow leading to the main castle door, and a battle against the evil witch.
What’s to like: The graphics in Castle of Illusion were some of the best on a home system at the time of its’ release. Even by today’s standards, Castle of Illusion looks great. The multi-parallax scrolling backgrounds are a joy to behold and Mickey really looked like an animated character. Along the way you’ll travel through 5 main stages and sub-levels including; the Enchanted Forest, Toy Land, The Storm, Library (with a land full of cake and other desserts), and The Castle. “Cake Land” was arguably the best looking level in the game and instantly made players hungry. There are also secret parts of every level that players can find which add a little replay value to the game.
Mickey attacks enemies by using “butt-stomps”. To do this move simply jump on an enemy and hold “down” on the control pad when connecting with your target. Mickey can also throw apples and marbles at foes as another way of attacking. As stated above, the main draw to Castle of Illusion are its detailed and colorful graphics, awesome level design, and perfect controls.
What’s not to like:Its obvious that Castle of Illusion was a game geared towards younger audiences. This isn’t necessarily bad but after mastering a few boss patterns the game can be beaten pretty quickly.
Check out a gameplay video of Castle of Illusion in the video below. This is stage 4, The Library or “Cake Land”, one of the best looking stages of the game. Overall at the bottom.
Other then its’ fairly easy quest, Castle of Illusion is a classic 16-Bit platformer that’s worth the time and money of any fan of the genre…young and old alike. At the time of its’ release, the NES was still a huge rival of the Genesis, and Castle of Illusion was one of the first games on Sega’s system to show off its graphical superiority over Nintendo’s aging console. Great characters, graphics, level design, and gameplay, all in one tiny Disney package. It’s is currently only available on the Genesis and is highly recommended.